Years ago I bought “Apostrophe,” an album by the late Frank Zappa. In one of the songs were the words: “The crux of the biscuit is found in the apostrophe.” Being a young man at the time, it took me a while to understand what Frank meant with those words. I think he meant that the heart of the matter is found in a place where you may not notice at first. That’s the way it is with branding; business owners often miss the “apostrophe.” The heart of the matter (the success of your business) is found in your branding.
In my own experience working with business owners, I have found that many business owners struggle for success because they focus almost entirely on the performance of their service or products as opposed to marketing a message, a brand that attracts people to their business. Your brand is the “crux of the biscuit.” People need to know what you stand for and why they will benefit from buying your services and/or products.
The American Marketing Association (AMA), defines a brand as a “term, name, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of these terms intended to identify the goods and services of a business, and to differentiate them from those of other businesses. What they miss in this sterile definition is the human element of branding. That part that people connect to emotionally. Most of the time, buying is emotional first, and then substantiated logically. It is important that we never forget this fact.
That being said, it is very important to understand that branding is not just about getting your target market to choose your business over the competition with a catchy phrase, word, or symbol; it is more about getting your prospects to see you and your company as a warm, human entity, and the best business providing a solution for their problem.
Good branding achieves the following:
Delivers the solution message clearly
Provides the “human element”
Connects to the emotional side of your prospect
Shows that you are a credible organization
Motivates your prospect to want to buy from you
Solidifies a certain amount of loyalty
What is your brand? What do you do, or can do that no other company can do as well? Your successful branding depends on you defining your own message and matching that message to the needs and wants of your customers and prospects. Solidify your branding by syndicating your branding strategies at every point of public contact: physical, in print, media, and definitely with your digital presence.
Your brand resides within the hearts and minds of customers, clients, and prospects. It is how they emotionally see you. It is how you touch the sum total of their experiences and perceptions about you, some of which you can influence, and some that you never will.
A strong branding is invaluable as market competition intensifies day by day. Spend your time investing in researching, defining, and building your brand. This is the “Crux of the Biscuit” when it comes to your success. Build your brand and incorporate it into all your marketing. Ensure that all employees understand, positively feel, agree with, and promote your brand. Success is inevitable!